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The 9 Best Museums to Visit in Orlando, Florida

Orlando is a world-renowned destination thanks to its amusement parks, such as Disneyland and Universal Studios. Many travelers from the United States come to this famous metropolis to explore these iconic attractions. However, there are other beautiful things that many visitors ignore, such as the museums. 

Fantastic Museums in Orlando

If you want to take a break from the Florida sun and the hectic atmosphere of the theme parks to do something indoors with air conditioning, check out these 9 Orlando museums, where you’re sure to have an unforgettable time. Read on to the end to find out which ones you might like the most! 

1. Orlando Science Center 

For over 60 years, the Orlando Science Center has been the perfect spot to awaken curiosity and exploration in children and adults. For those seeking the best science museum in Orlando, the Orlando Science Center is the place to go.

Visitors will find four floors of interactive science exhibits, dinosaur skeletons, 3D movies, live animals, and planetarium shows. The Orlando Science Center offers activities for people of all ages, such as interactive kid’s zones and adults-only nights. Each floor in this building presents something entertaining and unique.

Families will be mesmerized by this Orlando museum since kids and adults will have a great time there. 

Address: 777 E Princeton St, Orlando, FL 32803 

2. Orlando Museum of Art

Founded in 1924 by a group of art enthusiasts, the Orlando Museum of Art aims to inspire creativity, intellectual curiosity, and passion through its extensive exhibition of innovative art and ideas. 

Here you can appreciate rich and eclectic works such as Mesoamerican and African ceramics and textiles, modern graphics, mixed media pieces, and American sculptures. In addition to the permanent pieces, each year you will find different traveling exhibitions that will spark your inspiration. 

The Orlando Museum of Art is the perfect place to immerse yourself in a creative world, learn, and have fun. 

Address: 2416 N Mills Ave, Orlando, FL 32803

3. Mennello Museum of American Art

Considered one of the jewels of Loch Haven Park, the Mennello Museum of American Art is one of a kind and a great space for everyone, regardless of age.

The Mennello was established in November 1998 to conserve, interpret and exhibit Earl Cunningham’s permanent collection of paintings. Formerly a private home, this museum also offers special exhibitions, programs, and publications by contemporary American artists. In its various gallery spaces and intimate rooms, you can see varied exhibitions of American art from all genres and periods, including original and traveling exhibitions. Outside you’ll find another of its highlights: a lakeside sculpture garden that is sure to delight.

Address: 900 E Princeton St, Orlando, FL 32803 

4. Orange County Regional History Center 

This private non-profit museum features four floors full of rich history in the historic Orange County Courthouse.

The Orange County Regional History Center is housed in a restored historic 1927 courthouse. It displays the Central Florida Historical Society’s collection, the Joseph L. Brecher Research Library, Heritage Square Park, and the Emporium Gift Shop for souvenir lovers.

The museum’s mission is to serve as a space for preservation, community engagement, and inspiration for all who visit.

Address: 65 E Central Blvd, Orlando, FL 32801 

5. Orlando Fire Museum

The Orlando Firefighters Museum strives to engage both children and adults with history. This restored 1926 firehouse is an attraction where you can find out all about the history of the city’s brave firefighters and see antique equipment, including several fascinating fire trucks. 

Also located in Loch Haven Cultural Park, this museum, formerly Station 3, reopened in 2002. 

Admission to this museum is free, and it’s only open on Fridays and Saturdays. 

Address: 814 E Rollins St, Orlando, FL 32803 

6. Art & History Museums of Maitland

Managed by the Maitland Historical Society, this museum located in Orange County, Florida, is a national historic landmark that promises a fun time.

The Art and History Museum of Maitland preserves the past, engages the public, and nurtures artists throughout their careers. The five-acre property houses four museums scattered throughout the site where visitors can appreciate original art and historic antiques, learn from some of Central Florida’s finest instructors and even see local artists as they work.

This sanctuary for exploration, imagination, and curiosity is a must-see in Orlando.

Address: 231 W Packwood Ave, Maitland, FL 32751 

7. Albin Polasek Museum & Sculpture Gardens

The Albin Polasek Museum & Sculpture Gardens will delight any art lover and outdoor enthusiast with more than 200 works by the acclaimed Czech-born sculptor. 

Albin Polasek’s home, listed on the National Register of Historic Places, is located in the heart of the beautiful Winter Park on Lake Osceola. The Albin Polasek Museum & Sculpture Gardens showcases galleries and sculpture gardens in addition to his home. 

By taking a tour here, you’ll travel back in time to discover what the life and times of this remarkable artist were like along with changing exhibits that celebrate “art that tells a story.” A visit to the Albin Polasek Museum is cultural and inspirational enrichment. 

Address: 633 Osceola Ave, Winter Park, FL 32789

8. The Charles Hosmer Morse Museum of American Art 

The Charles Hosmer Morse Museum is undoubtedly one of Orlando’s hidden gems. This fantastic museum houses an extensive collection of works by the outstanding artist Louis Comfort Tifanny and different rooms, each with different and unique treasures to discover. 

This museum, located in the beautiful Winter Park neighborhood, offers affordable admission prices, discounts for seniors and students, and free admission for children under 12. If you’re looking for a hidden gem in Orlando, the Charles Hosmer Morse Museum of American Art is undoubtedly worth visiting. 

Address: 445 N Park Ave, Winter Park, FL 32789 

9. Casa Feliz Historic Home Museum 

Casa Feliz, Spanish for “Happy House,” is a restored 1930s Spanish country house designed by noted architect James Gamble Rogers III. 

In 2000, Casa Feliz was in danger of being demolished, but thanks to the raising of $1.7 million, the 750-ton house was moved across the street without damage. Today, this Andalusian-style farmhouse is a popular wedding and social venue that charms all who visit with its beautiful architecture.

Address: 656 N Park Ave, Winter Park, FL 32789

Bottom Line

As you just read, these nine museums are beautiful places to do something new and entertaining. Each one has its own distinctive character, but they are all great places to visit if you travel to Orlando, and you will surely enjoy them no matter which one or the ones you go to!

Top 19 Orlando Theme Parks and Attractions

Orlando is known as the world’s theme park capital for a reason – there are plenty of attractions to choose from, ranging from family-friendly rides to thrilling thrill rides.

This Central Florida city has dozens of theme parks, making it a popular destination for families and thrill-seekers. These parks offer attractions ranging from high-octane rides to family-friendly amusement park options, waterparks, and safari zoos. No wonder this city has been dubbed “The Theme Park Capital of the World.”

This article may contain affiliate links, which means I earn a commission from the sale (at no extra cost to you!). I recommend items that I personally love and believe these products will help you create your dream home.

Check out our travel guide for a complete list of fun things to do in Orlando, Florida!

Best Theme Parks and Attractions in Orlando

Regarding theme parks, Orlando is one of the best places in the world. Many iconic landmarks are worth visiting, including Disneyworld’s Magic Kingdom and Universal Orlando Resort’s Islands of Adventure Theme Park. Both offer exciting rides and attractions that will keep you entertained for hours!

Map of Orlando Theme Parks

Here is a map of the best theme parks in Orlando! You can view the entire map and start planning your vacation to Orlando!

Universal Studios Florida

Heading to Universal Studios Florida is a must when visiting Orlando. It offers year-round fun, so you can enjoy the theme park offerings regardless of when you visit. 

Taking a trip to Universal Studios means that you can be immersed in your favorite movie worlds through experiences and rides. You’ll find popular attractions, such as Men in Black™ Alien Attack™, E.T. Adventure, and Revenge of the Mummy. You’ll also encounter fun character parades, many dining choices, and plenty of shops to browse throughout the park. 

Address: 6000 Universal Blvd, Orlando, FL 32819

Universal’s Islands of Adventure

One of the most popular attractions at Universal Orlando is the Wizarding World of Harry Potter. This immersive experience allows you to jump into J.K. Rowling’s exciting universe, complete with a fire-breathing dragon. 

You can explore locations featured in the books and movies such as Diagon Alley™, the Leaky Cauldron™, and the Gringotts™ bank. You can even purchase a wand from Ollivanders™, which unlocks interactive items throughout the Harry Potter attractions.

On the other side of the park, you’ll find a land dedicated to Dr. Seuss charters, Marvel Super Hero Island (where you can fly high with The Incredible Hulk and Spider-Man), and a Jurassic Park-themed land. The newest roller coaster is the Jurassic World Velocicoaster!

Address: 6000 Universal Blvd, Orlando, FL 32819

Universal’s Volcano Bay

Spend the day at Volcano Bay Theme Park, part of the Universal Orlando Resort. This water park includes a volcano fitted with fun water slides that are great for adults and kids.

For a more relaxing visit, you can spend time at Waturi Beach. Other laid-back activities include spending time in the winding river or wave pool. There are also lounge chairs alongside the beach area for sunbathing.

Address: 6000 Universal Blvd, Orlando, FL 32819

Magic Kingdom Park at Walt Disney World

Situated at Walt Disney Resort, Magic Kingdom Park is an exciting theme park for people of all ages. This area features classic rides such as It’s a Small World, the Haunted Mansion, and Jungle Cruise.

During a trip to this theme park, you can experience the magical fireworks that shoot off nightly behind Cinderella Castle. You can also experience exciting holiday events at the Magic Kingdom, such as Mickey’s Not-So-Scary Halloween Party.

Address: 1180 Seven Seas Drive, Lake Buena Vista, FL 32830

Disney’s Animal Kingdom

Besides the Magic Kingdom at Walt Disney Resort, Disney’s Animal Kingdom is another theme park to visit with fun for the whole family. This area of Walt Disney Resort focuses on animals and all living things. You can jump on thrilling rides featuring animals, mingle with characters like Mickey Mouse and Donald Duck, or enjoy the array of Asian, American, and African food items.

You can also watch the Tree of Life light up, view the Disney character kites flying high, and learn about animal conservation while at Animal Kingdom.

Address: 2901 Osceola Pkwy, Lake Buena Vista, FL 32830

Disney’s Hollywood Studios

Centering around the show business theme, Disney’s Hollywood Studios also offers an immersive experience for visitors. It’s another Walt Disney Resort’s leading theme park in Lake Buena Vista. 

While at Hollywood Studios, you can visit Toy Story Land or jump into various Star Wars experiences. You can also see characters, like Mrs. And Mr. Incredible, as you’re exploring this theme park. Hollywood Studios is an excellent spot for movie lovers who want to explore an area dedicated to beloved films. 

Address: 351 S Studio Dr, Lake Buena Vista, FL 32830

Epcot

Travel the world without leaving the country by spending a day at Epcot. Also part of the Walt Disney Resorts, this fun theme park includes international cuisine, global culture, and thrilling rides. It also features the most beautiful landscape in the resort area.

Typically, Epcot is less crowded than the other main Disney theme parks, so you’ll also find ride and food lines shorter than in other areas of Disney Resort. Epcot also has two entrances, making it a convenient spot for you to explore.

Address: 200 Epcot Center Dr, Lake Buena Vista, FL 32830

Disney’s Fort Wilderness Resort

For an elevated camping experience, check out Disney’s Fort Wilderness Resort which features an American Frontier theme. This campground includes wildlife you can view as you enjoy the outdoors, such as armadillos and deer.

The Fort Wilderness Resort offers an array of wooded trails, pools with slides, and plenty of outdoor recreation opportunities. You can bring your dog to this resort, as it’s pet-friendly.

Address: 4510 Fort Wilderness Trail, Lake Buena Vista, FL 32830

Universal CityWalk

Plan a night of fun with dining and music at Universal CityWalk! This Universal Orlando attraction features exciting entertainment, top-notch restaurants, and many shops to browse. This area at the heart of Universal Studios includes a vibrant nightlife, complete with a dance club and karaoke lounge.

Other activities are available at CityWalk, including golfing and catching a movie at the 20-screen theater.

Address: 6000 Universal Blvd, Orlando, FL 32819

SEA LIFE Orlando Aquarium

View the only 360° tunnel in Orlando by visiting the Sea Life Orlando Aquarium. This aquarium features interactive activities like touching a starfish and views of exciting underwater life.

You can immerse yourself and your family more fully by taking a Behind the Scenes Tour, which includes a 30-minute peek into what an aquarist does daily. During a trip to Sea Life, you’ll learn about various underwater creatures (including mermaids!).

Address: 8449 International Dr, Orlando, FL 32819

SeaWorld Orlando

Visiting SeaWorld Orlando is always an exciting event. Your entire family can view and learn about marine life, such as dolphins and killer whales. You can even take a hands-on dolphin tour that provides an intimate experience with bottlenose dolphins. During this tour, you’ll feed and play with a dolphin.

Other exciting activities at SeaWorld include rides and wildlife shows. Sesame Street Land is an excellent stop at SeaWorld if you’re traveling with younger kids.

Address: 7007 Sea World Dr, Orlando, FL 32821

The Grand Reef snorkeling area at Discovery Cove
The Grand Reef snorkeling area at Discovery Cove

Discovery Cove

Discovery Cove is an all-inclusive family resort in Orlando that’s jam-packed with activities and amenities. This theme park includes fun activities like an underwater walking tour, snorkeling, swimming with fish at the Grand Reef, and more.

As this resort is all-inclusive, you’ll also have plenty of food and drink options. Food and beverages (including snacks) are unlimited on the property.

Address: 6000 Discovery Cove Way, Orlando, FL 32821

Crayola Experience

Crayola Experience

Spend a day with the kids at the Crayola Experience, packed with creative, hands-on activities. The Crayola Experience centers around providing people of all ages a way to dive into art and technology.

This theme park is open daily at 10 am, offering a colorful indoor activity so you can plan on this attraction regardless of the weather. During a visit to this theme park, you’ll learn about the history of Crayola and enjoy naming crayons and turning yourself into a coloring sheet.

Address: 8001 S Orange Blossom Trl, Orlando, FL 32809

Fun Spot America Theme Parks

Fun Spot America Theme Parks is not your typical theme park. Instead, this location provides an atmosphere similar to a big fair. At this theme park, you can play in the splash pad area with younger kids, go on thrilling rides, or join in a friendly competition while driving go-karts.

This Orlando theme park is one of my son’s favorite spots! It’s perfect for kids of all ages and fun for parents too.

Address: 5700 Fun Spot Way, Orlando, FL 32819

International Drive-Icon Park
International Drive-Icon Park

ICON Park Orlando

Icon Park is more than a theme park; it’s a top entertainment destination. While at Icon Park, taking a ride on The Wheel is a must. This ride takes you 400 feet into the air, offering views of the surrounding attractions (including Walt Disney World and Universal).

Other activities at Icon Park include Madame Tussauds Wax Museum, Sea Life, and the Pearl Express Train. There are also over 50 restaurants to eat at, quirky bars, and cute shops to explore.

Address: 8375 International Dr, Orlando, FL 32819

LEGOLAND® Florida Resort

Legoland is located about an hour away from Walt Disney World and Universal Studios. But this lego-themed resort is so epic and would be a great place to stay with your family! It’s a great destination for young children as well as teenagers. Give yourself time to spend a day at LEGOLAND Florida Water Park and take the younger kiddos to the Peppa Pig Theme Park Florida!

Address: 1 Legoland Way, Winter Haven, FL 33884

Gatorland

Gatorland is an experience like no other. This theme park was founded 73 years ago and sits on 110 acres. It also doubles as a wildlife preserve. While visiting Gatorland, you’ll see alligators and crocodiles of all shapes and sizes.

You can select between multiple zipline rides and off-roading excursions for more adventurous visitors. There’s also a petting zoo with friendly animals and the opportunity to go behind the scenes as a Trainer for a Day.

Address: 14501 S Orange Blossom Trl, Orlando, FL 32837

Nona Adventure Park

Water and nature lovers will enjoy a day spent at Nona Adventure Park! This attraction includes an inflatable water park to explore, a climbing tour, a ropes course, an obstacle course, and a rock-climbing area. 

It’s easy to spend a full day at this adventure park with the family, as there is quite a lot to do. It’s also a great spot to hold birthday parties or group events. Don’t forget to have every party member sign the waiver before heading here!

Address: 14086 Centerline Dr, Orlando, FL 32827

Old Town

Old Town is an amusement park in Kissimmee, FL, which covers 10 acres. This amusement area is highly walkable, offering an array of things to do and see.

This amusement park features classic rides, like a carousel and Ferris wheel. You’ll also find rollercoasters, a ninja challenge area, and a magic house. Live music and events, such as car shows, occur at Old Town throughout the year.

Address: 5770 W Irlo Bronson Memorial Hwy, Kissimmee, FL 34746

Final Thoughts

Orlando is a fantastic place to explore with family and friends, as many Orlando theme parks and attractions cater to people of all ages. Whether you prefer going on interactive rides, screaming on roller coasters or cooling off at a water park, you’ll find exciting theme parks and Orlando attractions that appeal to your interests. We hope you enjoy visiting these fun spots when you travel to the Orlando area!

21 Fun Things to do in Disney Springs

Are you looking for fun things to do in Orlando, Florida? Disney Springs is one of the most sought-after places to visit! Disney Springs is perfect if you love to shop at specialty stores and enjoy live entertainment! Luckily, if you visit Orlando just for the iconic Disney Experience, you will find everything you need, even if you spend just an afternoon at Disney Springs.

Disney Springs does not fall short of providing out-of-this-world and unique experiences. Be sure to check out their calendar for upcoming events. There are a few unique experiences at Disney Springs, including:

  • Hot air balloon rides with Aerophile
  • Live music at the waterside stage in AdventHealth
  • AMC 24-hour dine-in theater
  • Disney Characters Photo-Op
  • Cirque Du Soleil
  • And more!

What is Disney Springs known for?

Formerly known as downtown Disney, Disney Springs is a massive entertainment complex that offers a vast selection of shopping and dining. It’s located a few miles south of the best theme parks in Orlando. It features four distinct neighborhoods: The Landing, Town Center, Marketplace, and West Side.

  • The Landing is the port district and features waterfront dining and shopping, including The BOATHOUSE, Jock Lindsey’s Hangar Bar, and Morimoto Asia.
  • Town Center is the central shopping district and features Apple, Zara, Nike, and Under Armour flagship stores.
  • The Marketplace is an outdoor-style marketplace with food trucks and kiosks.
  • West Side is a nightlife and entertainment district with bars, restaurants, and live music venues.

Fun Things to do at Disney Springs

Here is a list of the best things to do at Disney Springs that you’ll love! Whether you’re visiting for a day on vacation, having a date night, or a day out with the kids, you’ll find plenty to do here.

Shopping at Disney Springs

1) Lego Store

The Lego Store at Disney Springs is an amazing place for Lego fans. They have a huge selection of sets, including the giant Hogwarts castle and the Collector’s Edition of the Millennium Falcon. One of the features we love is the Pick-a-Brick wall, where you can fill up a container with any bricks that fit for one price.

2) Disney’s Days of Christmas

This is such a lovely little Christmas shop! Inside the store, it is always Christmas 365 days a year. This is because combining two of people’s favorite things, Christmas and Disney, results in brilliance. There are so many different ornaments to choose from, and you can add your own personal touch to some of them.

The store is decorated beautifully too. You can see oversized ornaments and Disney characters hanging from the Christmas tree ceiling to give you the feeling that you are under a Christmas tree. In addition, there is a cozy fireplace covered in 101 Dalmatians in the corner of the store.

3) World of Disney® Gift Shop

If you want to go shopping for Disney merchandise, this is the place to be! This store has everything you can imagine, from Mickey Mouse ears, kitchen supplies, collectible pins, candy and treats to plush toys of all your favorite Disney characters. You can purchase special holiday merchandise for Halloween and Christmas too!

Unique Experiences

4) Hot Air Balloon Ride

The Aerophile is a hot air balloon that takes guests 400 ft above Disney Springs. It’s perfect for watching the park from a new perspective, and it’s also great for taking photos or selfies from high up! This 8-minute flight is $20 for adults (over 10) and $15 for kids 3-9 years old.

5) Splitsville Luxury Lanes™

Located on the West Side of Disney Springs, this is a really fun bowling alley to enjoy on a date night or with your kids! There are also pool tables so it’s a great place to hang out for several hours. If you’re hungry, you can order dinner here too. Everyone raves about the sushi and hand-tossed pizzas! Talk about your bowler’s paradise.

6) Coca-Cola Store

On the roof of the Coca-Cola Store, you can find a rooftop bar with views of Disney Springs and nearby Lake Buena Vista. There are also alcoholic beverages available.

Try this Orange Cream Float at Coca-Cola’s rooftop bar! @disney_foodie_girl

7) Disney PhotoPass Studio

Take a short time out of your trip to visit Disney Springs and the Disney PhotoPass Studio. A photographer can set your family up with various backdrops to take the perfect vacation photo. This service is free; you can purchase the photos at the studio or through your My Disney Experience app.

8) Vintage Amphicar Tours

Want to go on a car ride across the water? With the Vintage Amphicar Tours, you can do just that!

Places to Eat at Disney Springs

The dining options in Disney Springs are endless. One of the advantages of visiting Disney Springs is that there are more than 50 restaurants, bars, lounges, and snack stands available. This makes it easy to find a place to have a drink or some snacks. There are many different cuisines and prices to choose from!

Enjoy a delicious meal or sweet treat at one of the many restaurants in Disney Springs. From classic American fare to international cuisine, there’s something for everyone to enjoy.

9) House of Blues Restaurant and Bar

House of Blues is one of the most popular restaurants and bars in Orlando Springs. It offers a unique dining experience that combines Southern cuisine with live music. The restaurant is also known for its signature cocktails and extensive wine list.

House of Blues is the perfect place to enjoy a meal with friends or the whole family. The restaurant offers something for everyone, including appetizers, salads, sandwiches, burgers, and entrees. The bar is also a great place to relax and enjoy a drink. House of Blues has something for everyone, so be sure to check it out when you’re in Orlando Springs!

10) The Boathouse Restaurant

If you’re looking for a fantastic waterfront dining experience, The Boathouse Restaurant in Orlando is worth checking out. This award-winning establishment offers stunning views of Lake Buena Vista, delicious cuisine, and attentive service. Whether you’re celebrating a special occasion or want to treat yourself to a lovely evening out, The Boathouse Restaurant is a go-to restaurant!

11) Raglan Road Irish Pub

Disney’s prices can be a bit high, but Raglan Road Irish Pub performances make up for it. The pub features talented fiddlers, step dancers, singers, and more who will amaze you with their quality and variety. It was a lot of fun!

The restaurant is exquisitely designed, and the food is top-notch as well. You will not be disappointed with your experience here! The brown bread was especially delicious. They had a variety of exciting flights of beers and whiskeys to try, as well as friendly and efficient service.

12) Wolfgang Puck Grand Cafe

Wolfgang Puck Grand Cafe is located in Orlando, Florida. The restaurant offers American and international cuisine in a comfortable setting. Wolfgang Puck is the celebrity chef behind the restaurant and has become known for his signature dishes like pizzas and salads.

13) Wine Bar George

If you’re looking for a delicious way to spend an afternoon or evening, Wine Bar George is the perfect spot. The restaurant has an extensive wine list, cocktails, and a full bar – so you can order anything your heart desires! Plus, their charcuterie board is delightful and will really complement your wine.

If at any point you need to take a break from sampling wines and food (or vice versa), their upstairs table by the windows offers great views of Disney Springs at dusk.

14) Rainforest Cafe

It’s so much fun to eat at the Rainforest Cafe! There are lots of animatronic animals moving around and making animal sounds. There is also an aquarium with tropical fish and a gift shop.

15) Earl of Sandwich

Earl of Sandwich serves the best sandwiches ever! The food is always delicious and of high quality, and it helps to stay within budget. The tomato soup is a must, as is the tuna melt sandwich. You’ll walk away wishing there was a franchise location near you!

16) T-Rex Cafe

This place is really cool! The dinosaur theme is really fun, and kids enjoy the moving dinosaurs. Every 20 minutes, a meteor shower illuminates the ceiling and makes all the dinosaurs in the restaurant more active. The food at the restaurant is some of the best around, and you can buy drinks in souvenir cups too.

The aquariums featured different kinds of fish, and there were information packets about the fish available for visitors to peruse. The restrooms had fossil replicas all over the walls! This is definitely a fun dining experience at Disney Springs.

You can’t go wrong with whatever cookie you order but this Original Chocolate Chip Cookie is very epic! @happilyeverbrooke

17) Gideon’s Bakehouse

Gideon’s Bakehouse is known for its enormous half-pound cookies, but they also serve coffee and other baked goods. It is so popular that the shop uses a virtual queue on most days because the line can be more than an hour long. The bakehouse itself is also tastefully decorated with Victorian-themed decor. The chocolate chip cookies are loaded with chips, so be sure to have a glass of milk ready to drink! Fans particularly love the Peanut Butter Cold Brew Cookie and the Cookies & Cream.

Lemon blueberry cheesecake, chocolate mouse Mickey, and key lime tart! @walt_pixie

18) Amorette’s Patisserie

Amorette’s is a modern bakery specializing in French éclairs, miniature cakes, cookies, and macarons. You can order the most adorable Mickey Mouse dessert here! It is a chocolate chiffon cake filled with dark chocolate and white chocolate mousse and then topped beautifully with red coloring and mickey ears!

19) Swirls on the Water

Dole Whip is one of the most iconic Disney snacks. You can enjoy it at Disney Springs at the Swirls on the Water stand. Try different flavors and presentations, including a rum topper for your DOLE Whip! You can also order bubble waffles and crepes – yum!

20) Everglazed Donuts & Cold Brew

There are plenty of great places to get donuts in Orlando and Everglazed Donuts is on the list! Everglazed is a donut shop that provides classic and gourmet options and cold brew coffee. It offers unique beverage combinations, such as the Cinnamon Bun and Strawberry Mocha. Sandwiches are available throughout the day and night if you’re looking for some delicious bites.

A Mickey Waffle Cookie Sundae! @theweeklymouse

21) Marketplace Snacks

Marketplace Snacks serves sundaes that will make your Instagram feed look amazing! You can choose from various delectable creations inspired by beloved Disney characters. The one pictured here is the Mickey Waffle Cookie Sundae with Oreo Cookies! It includes vanilla soft-serve ice cream and other fun toppings for a tasty treat.

Where to Stay near Disney Springs

Disney Spring is home to many fun and unique hotels. We have listed our favorite hotels and resorts for you to choose from. The benefit of staying in a resort in Disney Springs is that you will also get access to discounts for all Disney theme parks.

Here are our top choices in Disney Springs:

The Walt Disney World Swan and Dolphin Resort

The Walt Disney World Swan and Dolphin Resort is a resort located in the Walt Disney World Resort, in Orlando, Florida. It is owned and operated by Walt Disney Parks and Resorts.

This resort is a blast because it offers something for everyone. There are amazing restaurants, fun pool areas, and great bars. You can also find plenty of activities to keep you busy, such as golf, tennis, and bike rentals. The resort is located close to many Disney attractions, so it’s easy for you to spend the day at the parks and be back in time for dinner.

The rooms at this hotel are luxurious. You will sleep like a queen (or king) on their comfortable beds with plush pillows and coverlets. Each room has free WiFi access, so you can occasionally check in with the outside world. The rooms also come equipped with flat-screen TVs, mini-fridges, and microwaves, so you never have to worry about staying hungry during your stay.

The Walt Disney World Swan and Dolphin feature two award-winning restaurants for guests to enjoy. These unique eateries offer delicious cuisine in an otherworldly setting.

Hilton Orlando Lake Buena Vista

The Hilton Orlando Lake Buena Vista is a Walt Disney World Resort hotel that offers various services and facilities, including a spa, fitness center, and pool. It’s home to three restaurants, including an all-day dining option and two lounges.

This luxurious hotel is located in the heart of Walt Disney World Resort. The hotel offers guests convenient access to all the magic and excitement this world-famous attraction offers. Guests can enjoy amazing views of the Disney Springs area from the comfort of their rooms. The hotel also features a variety of on-site dining options, a heated pool, and a lazy river.

The Hilton Orlando Lake Buena Vista features delicious restaurants. Their award-winning restaurants offer guests various delicious meals and incredible views. The hotel features suites that add to the already luxurious experience at this WDW resort hotel.

The Hilton Orlando Lake Buena Vista offers guests a convenient stay in an exciting locale. The Hilton Orlando Lake Buena Vista has everything you need to make your vacation magical, with countless dining options, award-winning restaurants, and luxurious rooms.

The Hilton Orlando Lake Buena Vista and The Walt Disney World Swan and Dolphin Resort’s location give guests access to all of the excitement at Walt Disney World Resort. Guests can easily access the Magic Kingdom, Epcot Center, Disney’s Animal Kingdom, and Disney Springs. A variety of dining options are available through the hotel.

Bottom Line

Here are some things to do in Disney Springs that will give you a little bit of everything. If you’re looking for a place to relax and enjoy some delicious food, head to the food court and try out some restaurants there. If you’re looking for something more active, take a walk through the shopping district or check out one of the many attractions. Whatever you choose to do, be sure to have fun!

87 Epic Things to do in Orlando, Florida (from a Local)

When it comes to fun and excitement, there’s nothing like a sunny day in Orlando, Florida. Whether you’re looking for a day out with your family or some nightlife action, this list covers the best places to enjoy some leisurely fun in Orlando.

Orlando has a large and diverse array of attractions that tourists of all ages can enjoy. These range from world-famous theme parks to historic sites, nature reserves, and museums. Locals can also enjoy unique experiences like miniature golf courses, stand-up paddleboarding, and even a yoga class with baby goats!

If you’re looking for a fun-filled vacation in Orlando, there are plenty of activities that you’ll love. Start planning your trip today!

Do you only have one day in Orlando during your Florida vacation? Check out our itinerary guide for 24 hours in Orlando!

Fun Things to do in Orlando (Free Map!)

Orlando is a great place to visit because it offers so much. There are plenty of attractions to enjoy, no matter your interests. There is so much to see and do in Orlando that you’re sure to find something that you love whether it’s spending time outdoors in one of Orlando’s beautiful parks or attending a basketball game or comedy show.

Need help planning your trip to Orlando? Open this map and you’ll see all of Orlando’s best attractions!

Wine and Dine

Orlando won’t disappoint you with restaurants, donut shops, coffee shops, breweries, and wineries! We’re highlighting just a few establishments that are worth checking out. We also have complete guides on where to eat breakfast in Orlando and the best lunch spots. If you’re visiting on the weekend, you should also consider a menu that includes bottomless mimosas!

Enzian Theater at night with string lights and people dining outside

1) Enzian Theater

Enzian Theater is a local theater with an interesting twist; in addition to screenings of movies, they offer diners the chance to enjoy a meal or drink outdoors on their own patio.

Reservations are strongly recommended for larger groups, as they feature a few different selections each week. For more information, please call the theater directly.

Address: 1300 Orlando Ave, Maitland, FL 32751

hand holding a glass of white wine at Lakeridge Winery

2) Lakeridge Winery & Vineyards

Lakeridge Winery & Vineyards has a variety of muscadine wines for you to enjoy. This is a beautiful place to bring your family or just yourself, and they offer live entertainment and food, all at great prices. The free tour and the store offer a great selection of wine accessories.

Address: 19239 US-27, Clermont, FL 34715

3) Hanson’s Shoe Repair

Hanson’s Shoe Repair is a hidden speakeasy cocktail bar in downtown Orlando with an old-fashioned vibe and expertly made drinks. It’s worth the money to visit this unique establishment.

Remember to have your password and ID ready to ensure your safety and that you have a good time at the bar. Additionally, do not drink vodka because it makes strong cocktails.

Address: 27 E Pine St, Orlando, FL 32801

4) ICEBAR Orlando

The ICEBAR Orlando is a bar built entirely from ice that provides a way to keep patrons warm while they wait for the room to thaw out. Drinks are creatively named and taste great; guests receive a fur jacket of their choice and gloves when they enter. This disco bar has great vibes and provides an unforgettable evening of entertainment, dance, and fun for everyone who visits.

Address: 8967 International Dr, Orlando, FL 32819

5) Celery City Craft Beer Garden

There is a lot to do in downtown Sanford! Still, you can get started at Celery City Craft, a beer garden hosting weekly events like live music and trivia nights. This is a great place to bring your dogs because there is plenty of outdoor space and trees. Several menus include craft beers, cocktails, cigars, brunch, and dinner.

Address: 114 S Palmetto Ave, Sanford, FL 32771

6) Craft Breweries

There are dozens of craft breweries around Orlando that are worth visiting! Some notable ones include Ivanhoe Park Brewing Company, Crooked Can Brewing Company, and Hourglass Brewing. Many of these breweries serve food, and they’re fun places to hang out when there is a football game to watch!

7) The Hammered Lamb

It’s challenging to decide where to eat in Orlando because there are many fantastic choices. But you can’t go wrong with The Hammered Lamb! They have ping pong tables in a relaxed atmosphere that’s fun and inviting. And as the restaurant’s name suggests, they have lamb featured on their menu. To make this place even more fun, they offer free shots when a train goes by–no joke!

Address: 1235 N Orange Ave, Orlando, FL 32804

8) East End Market

If you’re looking for a fun and festive marketplace to visit during your stay in Winter Park, the East End Market is definitely worth checking out. Order a latte at Lineage Coffee Roasting. Winter Park Biscuit Company’s food is also an excellent breakfast and coffee option. You can also take home some of Gideon cookies, which has a shorter line compared to the location at Disney Springs.

Address: 3201 Corrine Dr, Orlando, FL 32803

9) Disney Springs

Disney Springs is a large outdoor shopping and dining complex near Walt Disney World Resort in Lake Buena Vista, Florida. The complex first opened in 1975, and has undergone several name changes over the years.

Disney Springs has a lot of unique shops, restaurants, and activities. Look at our article on things to do in Disney Springs to learn more. They have that if you want to go bowling or watch a movie. They also have a lot of shops dedicated to different brands of clothes and toys, which is great if you’re into those things.

We’ve highlighted a few restaurants you should check out if you plan to spend a day at Disney Springs!

Address: 1486 Buena Vista Dr, Lake Buena Vista, FL 32830

10) Wine Bar George

Wine Bar George offers wine tastings and weekend brunch. The restaurant is located in the heart of Disney Springs and has an extensive wine list, cocktails, and a full bar. Order a charcuterie board because they are delightful and will compliment your wine! The upstairs table by the windows has a great view at dusk.

Address: 1610 E Buena Vista Dr, Lake Buena Vista, FL 32830

11) Raglan Road Irish Pub

Disney’s prices can be a bit high, but the quality of Raglan Road Irish Pub performances makes up for it. There were fiddlers, step dancers, singers… You will be impressed at the level of quality and variety in their performance. It was a lot of fun!

The restaurant is beautifully designed. The food is also top-notch! You will not be disappointed with your experience here! The brown bread was incredibly fantastic. They had a variety of exciting flights of beers and whiskeys to try, as well as friendly and efficient service.

Address: 1640 Buena Vista Dr, Orlando, FL 32830

12) The Boathouse

If you’re looking for a waterfront dining experience, The Boathouse Restaurant in Orlando is a must-visit. This award-winning restaurant offers stunning views of Lake Buena Vista, delicious cuisine, and attentive service.

Whether you’re celebrating a special occasion or just want to treat yourself to a lovely evening out, this restaurant in Disney Springs is a great choice. Try the filet mignon sliders – they’re fantastic!

Address: 1620 E Buena Vista Dr, Lake Buena Vista, FL 32830

13) Quantum Leap Winery

The wine here at Quantum Leap Winery is of high quality, and the prices are very reasonable. A wine flight is only $5, which makes it a great place to visit if you’re looking for a quiet evening out. Craft beers and ciders are also options if you’re not a fan of wine. The staff is knowledgeable and friendly. They make time for every customer, even during their busiest hours. You definitely won’t be disappointed if you visit them!

Address: 1312 Wilfred Dr, Orlando, FL 32803

Parks and Gardens

Take a stroll through one of the city’s many parks or gardens. They offer beautiful scenery along their walking trails!

14) Lake Eola Park

Lake Eola Park is a public park located in the heart of Downtown Orlando, Florida. Walt Disney Amphitheater is also located in the park, which hosts many community events and performances year-round.

A Chinese pagoda and a playground are on the park’s east side. It is an excellent area for families and couples if you want to walk around solo. Cute brunch spots and bars around Lake Eola make it even better!

Address: 512 E Washington St, Orlando, FL 32801

You can easily enter the water at Kelly Park for an afternoon of swimming! @Yelp

15) Kelly Park

Kelly Park is a gorgeous place to spend a day exploring. Located in Rock Springs, Apopka, and Kelly Park is one of the closest springs to the city. The spring water at this location is consistently 68 degrees Fahrenheit, making it a popular place for locals and guests to cool off from Florida’s humidity.

Address: 400 E Kelly Park Rd, Apopka, FL 32712

16) Blue Spring State Park

Blue Spring State Park sits along the St. Johns River and is home to some of Florida’s most gentle giants we call manatees. In addition to various marine creatures, the park also houses a wide variety of bird species.

The spring keeps a constant temperature of 72 degrees Fahrenheit, perfect for swimming and other water activities, and nature lovers will enjoy the park’s 5 miles of hiking trails.

Address: 2100 West French Avenue, Orange City, FL 32763

17) Central Florida Zoo & Botanical Gardens

Central Florida Zoo & Botanical Gardens is one of the most popular places to visit while in Orlando. Featuring over 100 species of plants and animals, it is an excellent place for families and visitors of all ages looking for a fun day in the city outside of a theme park. Explore and interact with your favorite animals, and immerse yourself in nature in the magical botanical gardens.

Address: 3755 W Seminole Blvd, Sanford, FL 32771

18) Harry P. Leu Gardens

Harry P. Leu Gardens is one of the city’s most sublime and luscious green pockets. It’s just minutes from downtown Orlando, sitting on 50 acres of botanical beauty overlooking Lake Rowena. The park was donated to the city by Harry P. Leu and his wife, Mary Jane, who lived in the majestic estate on the property. The couple traveled extensively worldwide and brings back seeds and plants from their journeys.

Address: 1920 North Forest Avenue, Orlando, FL 32803

19) Mead Botanical Garden

Mead Botanical Garden is a beautiful oasis in the heart of Winter Park, just north of Orlando. Setting on 47 acres, your senses will come alive while you find tranquility, relax in nature, and experience the peacefulness of an urban setting outside the city’s hustle. Interact and immerse yourself in nature at one of the most beloved destinations in Orange County.

Address: 1300 South Denning Drive, Winter Park, FL 32789

Museums

20) Orlando Museum of Art

Founded in 1924 by a group of art enthusiasts, the Orlando Museum of Art aims to inspire creativity, intellectual curiosity, and passion through its extensive exhibition of innovative art and ideas. 

Here you can appreciate rich and eclectic works such as Mesoamerican and African ceramics and textiles, modern graphics, mixed media pieces, and American sculptures. In addition to the permanent pieces, each year you will find different traveling exhibitions that will spark your inspiration. 

The Orlando Museum of Art is the perfect place to immerse yourself in a creative world, learn, and have fun.

Address: 2416 N Mills Ave, Orlando, FL 32803

dinosaur skeletons at Orlando Science Center

21) Orlando Science Center

For over 60 years, the Orlando Science Center has been the perfect spot to awaken curiosity and exploration in children and adults. For those seeking the best science museum in Orlando, the Orlando Science Center is the place to go.

Visitors will find four floors of interactive science exhibits, dinosaur skeletons, 3D movies, live animals, and planetarium shows. The Orlando Science Center offers activities for people of all ages, such as interactive kid’s zones and adults-only nights. Each floor in this building presents something entertaining and unique.

Address: 777 E Princeton St, Orlando, FL 32803 

22) Mennello Museum of American Art

Considered one of the jewels of Loch Haven Park, the Mennello Museum of American Art is one of a kind and a great space for everyone, regardless of age.

The Mennello was established in November 1998 to conserve, interpret and exhibit Earl Cunningham’s permanent collection of paintings. Formerly a private home, this museum also offers special exhibitions, programs, and publications by contemporary American artists.

In its various gallery spaces and intimate rooms, you can see varied exhibitions of American art from all genres and periods, including original and traveling exhibitions.

Outside you’ll find another of its highlights: a lakeside sculpture garden that is sure to delight.

Address: 900 E Princeton St, Orlando, FL 32803 

23) Casa Feliz Historic Home Museum

Casa Feliz, Spanish for “Happy House,” is a restored 1930s Spanish country house designed by noted architect James Gamble Rogers III. 

In 2000, Casa Feliz was in danger of being demolished, but thanks to the raising of $1.7 million, the 750-ton house was moved across the street without damage. Today, this Andalusian-style farmhouse is a popular wedding and social venue that charms all who visit with its beautiful architecture.

Address: 656 N Park Ave, Winter Park, FL 32789

Art & Entertainment

Orlando is a city with plenty to do, both art-wise and entertainment-wise. Whether you’re looking to take in a play or watch a blockbuster movie, Orlando has something for you to enjoy a night out on the town.

24) Teatro Martini Orlando

A night at Teatro Martini will be one that you will never forget! Adults will enjoy a steak dinner with a variety show at this lively pirate-themed venue. The dancers and comedians are the show stars, with their hilarious routines and dazzling moves. The pianist is an impressive addition who adds a touch of elegance to the performance.

Address: 6400 Carrier Dr, Orlando, FL 32819

25) Attend a Comedy Show

Comedy clubs in Orlando are a great option if you’re looking for a night out that will make you laugh out loud. They offer weekly shows, so you can go whenever you’re in the mood for a good laugh. If you want to explore more than one club, why not try out two or three? You won’t be disappointed.

26) Go to a Concert

The Amway Center is the place to go for concerts, comedy shows, and basketball games. Check their events calendar so you can purchase tickets!

Address: 400 W Church St Suite 200, Orlando, FL 32801

Here are some other concert venues in Orlando that are worth checking out.

  • The Social is an indie club that features eclectic bands
  • The Abbey is a theater located in downtown Orlando that features live music, comedy shows, and cabaret performances

27) Painting with a Twist

Painting with a Twist is an event where people get together to paint, have drinks and snacks, and laugh while painting a pretty picture. It’s the perfect opportunity to make new friends or reconnect with old ones. Go to their event calendar to what paintings are on the schedule and book a girls’ night with your friends!

Address: 6700 Conroy Rd Ste 125, Orlando, FL 32835

28) Nailed It DIY Studio Orlando

At Nailed It DIY Studio Orlando, participants are briefed on home decorating basics and then given a kit to take home that same day. They are taught how to build and paint wooden pieces they can take home with them! You and five friends can schedule a class together through Groupon!

Address: 12789 Waterford Lakes Pkwy Suite 6, Orlando, FL 32828

International Drive

Orlando has a lot of theme parks, but you can also do interesting things off the beaten path if you want. International Drive is full of great activities that won’t require getting into a park.

29) SEA LIFE Orlando Aquarium

View the only 360° tunnel in Orlando by visiting the Sea Life Orlando Aquarium. This aquarium features interactive activities like touching a starfish and views of exciting underwater life.

You can immerse yourself and your family more fully by taking a Behind the Scenes Tour, which includes a 30-minute peek into what an aquarist does daily. During a trip to Sea Life, you’ll learn about various underwater creatures (including mermaids!).

Address: 8449 International Dr, Orlando, FL 32819

30) Ripley’s Believe it or Not!

The Ripley’s Believe it or Not! Museum has a collection of oddities, including shrunken human heads, optical illusions, a spinning tunnel, and rare animal skeletons. Some specific experiences can leave you feeling a bit disoriented because of optical illusions. However, overall, they are a lot of fun! The museum is open daily from 10 am – 10 pm.

Address: 8201 International Dr, Orlando, FL 32819

31) Titanic Artifact Exhibition

The Titanic Museum offers artifacts, re-creations of the ship, and guided tours. Register for the Titanic Dinner Gala, which includes a Captain’s cocktail party, a tour of the Exhibition, a first-class dinner, and reenactments of what occurred when the Titanic sank. Don’t miss the grand staircase replica because it’s awe-inspiring!

Address: 7324 International Dr, Orlando, FL 32819

three adults posing with a Superman wax figure at Madame Tussauds

32) Madame Tussauds

To fool your friends into thinking you’ve just bumped into a few holidaying celebrities, visit Madame Tussauds famous wax museum. Pose with historical leaders like US presidents, Hollywood celebrities and musicians, and famous superheroes.

Address: 8387 International Dr, Orlando, FL 32819

33) WonderWorks

WonderWorks Orlando is a family-friendly science center that fuses education with over 100 interactive exhibits. Families and friends can play laser tag, move their way through a rope course, learn about physics and chemistry in the lab, and attend a magic comedy show and dinner. With so much to enjoy, WonderWorks Orlando is sure to keep everyone entertained!

Address: 9067 International Dr, Orlando, FL 32819

34) Chocolate Kingdom

Have you ever wondered how chocolate beans transform into chocolate bars? Chocolate Kingdom is a whimsical chocolate museum and factory where you can learn about the history of chocolate. You can make your own custom chocolate bar at the end of the tour.

Address: 9901 Hawaiian Ct, Orlando, FL 32819

35) Museum of Illusions

The Museum of Illusions is a new attraction at ICON Park, but it’s not the only reason to visit the park. The museum features illusions that are sure to amaze visitors. It is well-stocked with photo opportunities, and the staff are happy to help you take advantage of them. One staff member even showed me how to use some cool features on my camera.

Address: 8375 International Drive Icon Park

36) Pirate’s Cove Adventure Golf

This pirate-themed golf course is perfect for families and date nights! You work through 18 holes by maneuvering through caves and waterfalls and crossing a pirate ship. At each hole, a small part of Blackbeard’s story adds to the fun and makes the wait less painful if you are in line behind someone. Along the trail are benches and seats for people to rest their legs.

Address: 8501 International Dr, Orlando, FL 32819

37) Escape Rooms

If you want to avoid crowds, an excellent way to entertain yourself and your family is by attending an escape room. Multiple options throughout Florida provide themed rooms that can be tailored to your and your family’s interests.

Escape rooms are a great way to get your family to communicate better. They encourage cooperation and help you solve puzzles together, which can be fun. There are many different escape room options, including The Great Escape Room and The Bureau.

Your Beer Spa package includes complimentary self-serve beer!

38) Beer Spa

The whole Beer Spa package is phenomenal since it transports you to your very own European Spa experience. The place is super clean, nicely decorated, and welcoming to all guests. The hot tub, sauna, and hay bed are all part of the spa experience. They all make for a fantastic spa experience!

Address: 11787 International Dr Ste 106, Orlando, FL 32821

Theme Parks and Orlando Attractions

Orlando is the world’s theme park capital, for a good reason! Visit a theme park like Universal Orlando Resort or Walt Disney World Resort. There’s something for everyone here, with attractions ranging from family-friendly rides to thrilling thrill rides.

Visit some iconic landmarks like Disneyworld’s Magic Kingdom or Universal Orlando Resort’s Islands of Adventure Theme Park. Both offer exciting rides and attractions that will keep you entertained for hours.

39) Universal Studios Florida

Heading to Universal Studios Florida is a must when visiting Orlando. It offers year-round fun, so you can enjoy the theme park offerings regardless of when you visit. 

Taking a trip to Universal Studios means that you can be immersed in your favorite movie worlds through experiences and rides. You’ll find popular attractions, such as Men in Black™ Alien Attack™, E.T. Adventure, and Revenge of the Mummy. You’ll also encounter fun character parades, many dining choices, and plenty of shops to browse throughout the park. 

Address: 6000 Universal Blvd, Orlando, FL 32819

40) Wizarding World of Harry Potter

One of the most popular attractions at Universal Orlando is the Wizarding World of Harry Potter. This immersive experience allows you to jump into J.K. Rowling’s exciting universe, complete with a fire-breathing dragon. 

You can explore locations featured in the books and movies such as Diagon Alley™, the Leaky Cauldron™, and the Gringotts™ bank. You can even purchase a wand from Ollivanders™, which unlocks interactive items throughout the Harry Potter attractions.

Address: 6000 Universal Blvd, Orlando, FL 32819

41) Magic Kingdom Park

Situated at Walt Disney Resort, Magic Kingdom Park is an exciting theme park for people of all ages. This area features classic rides such as It’s a Small World, the Haunted Mansion, and Jungle Cruise.

During a trip to this theme park, you can experience the magical fireworks that shoot off nightly behind Cinderella Castle. You can also experience exciting holiday events at the Magic Kingdom, such as Mickey’s Not-So-Scary Halloween Party.

Address: 1180 Seven Seas Drive, Lake Buena Vista, FL 32830

42) Disney’s Animal Kingdom

Besides the Magic Kingdom at Walt Disney Resort, Disney’s Animal Kingdom is another theme park to visit with fun for the whole family. This area of Walt Disney Resort focuses on animals and all living things. You can jump on thrilling rides featuring animals, mingle with characters like Mickey Mouse and Donald Duck, or enjoy the array of Asian, American, and African food items.

You can also watch the Tree of Life light up, view the Disney character kites flying high, and learn about animal conservation while at Animal Kingdom.

Address: 2901 Osceola Pkwy, Lake Buena Vista, FL 32830

43) Disney’s Hollywood Studios

Centering around the show business theme, Disney’s Hollywood Studios also offers an immersive experience for visitors. It’s another Walt Disney Resort’s leading theme park in Lake Buena Vista.

While at Hollywood Studios, you can visit Toy Story Land or jump into various Star Wars experiences. You can also see characters, like Mrs. And Mr. Incredible, as you’re exploring this theme park. Hollywood Studios is an excellent spot for movie lovers who want to explore an area dedicated to beloved films.

Address: 351 S Studio Dr, Lake Buena Vista, FL 32830

44) Epcot

Travel the world without leaving the country by spending a day at Epcot. Also part of the Walt Disney Resorts, this fun theme park includes international cuisine, global culture, and thrilling rides. It also features the most beautiful landscape in the resort area.

Typically, Epcot is less crowded than the other main Disney theme parks, so you’ll also find ride and food lines shorter than in other areas of Disney Resort. Epcot also has two entrances, making it a convenient spot for you to explore.

Address: 200 Epcot Center Dr, Lake Buena Vista, FL 32830

45) Volcano Bay Theme Park

Spend the day at Volcano Bay Theme Park, part of the Universal Orlando Resort. This water park includes a volcano fitted with fun water slides that are great for adults and kids.

For a more relaxing visit, you can spend time at Waturi Beach. Other laid-back activities include spending time in the winding river or wave pool. There are also lounge chairs alongside the beach area for sunbathing.

Address: 6000 Universal Blvd, Orlando, FL 32819

46) Disney’s Fort Wilderness Resort

For an elevated camping experience, check out Disney’s Fort Wilderness Resort which features an American Frontier theme. This campground includes wildlife you can view as you enjoy the outdoors, such as armadillos and deer.

The Fort Wilderness Resort offers an array of wooded trails, pools with slides, and plenty of outdoor recreation opportunities. You can bring your dog to this resort, as it’s pet-friendly.

Address: 4510 Fort Wilderness Trail, Lake Buena Vista, FL 32830

47) Universal CityWalk

Plan a night of fun with dining and music at Universal CityWalk! This Universal Orlando attraction features exciting entertainment, top-notch restaurants, and many shops to browse. This area at the heart of Universal Studios includes vibrant nightlife, complete with a dance club and karaoke lounge.

Other activities are available at CityWalk, including golfing and catching a movie at the 20-screen theater. It’s one of the best places to hang out in Orlando!

Address: 6000 Universal Blvd, Orlando, FL 32819

48) SeaWorld Orlando

Visiting SeaWorld Orlando is always an exciting event. Your entire family can view and learn about marine life, such as dolphins and killer whales. You can even take a hands-on dolphin tour that provides an intimate experience with bottlenose dolphins. During this tour, you’ll feed and play with a dolphin.

Other exciting activities at SeaWorld include rides and wildlife shows. Sesame Street Land is an excellent stop at SeaWorld if you’re traveling with younger kids.

Address: 7007 Sea World Dr, Orlando, FL 32821

49) Discovery Cove

Discovery Cove is an all-inclusive family resort in Orlando that’s jam-packed with activities and amenities. This theme park includes fun activities like an underwater walking tour, snorkeling, swimming with fish at the Grand Reef, and more.

As this resort is all-inclusive, you’ll also have plenty of food and drink options. Food and beverages (including snacks) are unlimited on the property.

Address: 6000 Discovery Cove Way, Orlando, FL 32821

Crayola Experience

50) Crayola Experience

Spend a day with the kids at the Crayola Experience, packed with creative, hands-on activities. The Crayola Experience centers around providing people of all ages a way to dive into art and technology.

This theme park is open daily at 10 am, offering a colorful indoor activity so you can plan on this attraction regardless of the weather. During a visit to this theme park, you’ll learn about the history of Crayola and enjoy naming crayons and turning yourself into a coloring sheet.

Address: 8001 S Orange Blossom Trl, Orlando, FL 32809

51) Fun Spot America Theme Parks

Fun Spot America Theme Parks is not your typical theme park. Instead, this location provides an atmosphere similar to a big fair. At this theme park, you can play in the splash pad area with younger kids, go on thrilling rides, or join in a friendly competition while driving go-karts.

This Orlando theme park is one of my son’s favorite spots! It’s perfect for kids of all ages and fun for parents too.

Address: 5700 Fun Spot Way, Orlando, FL 32819

52) ICON Park Orlando

Icon Park is more than a theme park; it’s a top entertainment destination. While at Icon Park, taking a ride on The Wheel is a must. This ride takes you 400 feet into the air, offering views of the surrounding attractions (including Walt Disney World and Universal).

Other activities at Icon Park include Madame Tussauds Wax Museum, Sea Life, and the Pearl Express Train. There are also over 50 restaurants to eat at, quirky bars, and cute shops to explore.

Address: 8375 International Dr, Orlando, FL 32819

53) Medieval Times Dinner

Step back in time during dinner and a show at Medieval Times Dinner! You’ll encounter dueling knights, noble people, and majestic horses in Medieval Times. As you’re watching the tournament unfold, you’ll feast on a four-course meal with roasted chicken, garlic bread, and more. If you’re vegetarian, Medieval Times offers a meatless entrée option. 

Afterward, you can take photos with the knights and noble court members. After the show, you can purchase costumes and toy weapons for additional photo opportunities. This activity is appropriate for kids of all ages, with those under three receiving free admission.

Address: 4510 Vine St, Kissimmee, FL 34746

54) Gatorland

Gatorland is an experience like no other. This theme park was founded 73 years ago and sits on 110 acres. It also doubles as a wildlife preserve. While visiting Gatorland, you’ll see alligators and crocodiles of all shapes and sizes.

You can select between multiple zipline rides and off-roading excursions for more adventurous visitors. There’s also a petting zoo with friendly animals and the opportunity to go behind the scenes as a Trainer for a Day.

Address: 14501 S Orange Blossom Trl, Orlando, FL 32837

55) IFly Orlando

Looking for an exciting activity? Why not skydive indoors at IFly Orlando? This attraction is open daily, with hours varying each day. If you want to partake in skydiving, you’ll head into a wind tunnel where you can float above the ground propelled by strong winds.

IFly Orlando also offers a STEM program for groups of kids to educate them on various topics with demonstrations occurring in the wind tunnel.

Address: 8969 International Dr, Orlando, FL 32819

56) Nona Adventure Park

Water and nature lovers will enjoy a day spent at Nona Adventure Park! This attraction includes an inflatable water park to explore, a climbing tour, a ropes course, an obstacle course, and a rock-climbing area. 

It’s easy to spend a full day at this adventure park with the family, as there is quite a lot to do. It’s also a great spot to hold birthday parties or group events. Don’t forget to have every party member sign the waiver before heading here!

Address: 14086 Centerline Dr, Orlando, FL 32827

57) Old Town

Old Town is an amusement park in Kissimmee, FL, which covers 10 acres. This amusement area is highly walkable, offering an array of things to do and see.

This amusement park features classic rides, like a carousel and Ferris wheel. You’ll also find rollercoasters, a ninja challenge area, and a magic house. Live music and events, such as car shows, occur at Old Town throughout the year.

Address: 5770 W Irlo Bronson Memorial Hwy, Kissimmee, FL 34746

58) Disney Monorail Bar Crawl

Some people believe that the monorail exists solely to speed up families making their way from Epcot and the Magic Kingdom to nearby Disney hotels. However, I argue that its primary purpose is to make guests safer and more enjoyable by facilitating a night of fun drinks, friends, and Disney attractions.

The free resort monorail line has been a popular way to explore the three resorts linked on the loop for years. Whether to sightsee or enjoy progressive dining or Disney monorail pub crawl, it’s a fun way to get around.

59) Citrus Tower

Visit the Florida Citrus Tower and learn the history of Clermont and get amazing scenic views. The Florida Citrus Tower is a 226-foot-tall structure in Clermont, Florida. It was originally built to allow visitors to observe the miles of surrounding orange groves, and it was once among the most famous landmarks of the Orlando area.

Address: 141 S Hwy 27, Clermont, FL 34711

Water Activities in Orlando

60) Alligator Airboat Tour

The airboat rides allow you to experience the natural wildlife in Orlando, Florida. During the tour, you’ll get a closer look at Florida alligators, wildlife of all kinds, many species of birds, and beautiful flora. The captains are very knowledgeable about the animals and ecosystems and will tell you all about the wildlife. Book a tour with Orlando Airboat Tours for a one-of-a-kind experience!

Address: 2830 Neptune Rd, Kissimmee, FL 34744

61) Island H2O Water Park

Island H2O Water Park in Margaritaville is open for summer fun and is now offering a fall lineup of events. The waterpark is a great place to spend a day if you’re looking for something different than the more popular and expensive options. This water park has activities for everyone, from grandparents to babies. There are a lazy pool and adults-only pool, as well as rides for teens to enjoy!

Address: 3230 Inspiration Dr, Kissimmee, FL 34747

62) Winter Park Scenic Boat Ride

If you’re looking for an hour of relaxation and entertainment, this scenic boat tour in Winter Park is a great option. The scenery is beautiful, and the guide was very informative and entertaining. It’s easy to get to, and not too expensive.

Address: 312 E Morse Blvd, Winter Park, FL 32789

63) Orlando Watersports Complex

The Orlando Watersports Complex is an ample watersports park with activities like wakeboarding, wakeskating, wake surfing, kneeboarding and waterskiing. OWC has been a leading provider of wakeboarding instruction for more than a decade. The company’s two cable systems and boat lake offer students abundant opportunities to learn how to wakeboard.

Address: 8615 Florida Rock Rd, Orlando, FL 32824

64) Wekiwa Springs State Park

Since the mid-19th century, Wekiwa Springs has been a popular destination for hikers, bikers, and horseback riders who appreciate its many miles of trails. The main draw of this park is its spring-fed pool. Canoes and kayaks are available onsite to explore the springs’ numerous waterways. Admission to enter the park is $6 per person.

Address: 1800 Wekiwa Cir, Apopka, FL 32712

65) Rock Springs Guided Clear Kayak Tours

Take a guided clear kayak tour at Rock Springs for a unique experience! This adventure begins with an intermediate paddle through Emerald Cut starting from Kings Landing, followed by a relaxing drift back to the launch site. The paddle portion of the tour is a bit strenuous, but the float back is well worth it. We will take a few breaks along the way to give your arms a break and to provide you with an opportunity to appreciate the beautiful surroundings.

Address: King’s Landing, 5722 Baptist Camp Rd, Apopka, FL 32712

66) Go Castaway Fishing Charters

Captain Jon Moss is a great host and will make this fishing charter for everyone. He is patient and helpful to anyone with different levels of fishing skills. He makes the experience feel like a friendlier affair, rather than someone trying to teach us everything we needed to know.

Address: 520 Morocco Ave, Orlando, FL 32807

67) Neon Night Glow Paddle

Explore Lake Ivanhoe at Night with the Neon Night Glow Paddle! Lake Ivanhoe is an amazing place to light up the night. The city lights and clear waters make it a surreal experience for a stand-up paddleboard tour. It’s beginner-friendly and you can even bring your dog!

Address: Lake Ivanhoe Boat Ramp, 344 Northeast Ivanhoe Blvd, Orlando, FL 32804

68) Boggy Creek Airboat Adventures

Boggy Creek Airboat Adventures is a great way to see Florida away from the amusement parks. Much better than an afternoon at Disney Springs! They had a restaurant and gift shop and different things to look at while you waited.

Address: 2001 E Southport Rd, Kissimmee, FL 34746

69) Epic Paddle Adventures

Lake Ivanhoe is so calming and scenic! They offer all kinds of tours, including a Night Glow Paddle and Paddle with Pups & Bunny (bring your dog!).

70) Sailing Orlando

Enjoy a private sailing tour of Lake Fairview on this comfortable 25-foot MacGregor sailboat. Meet at Lake Fairview Park and hop aboard, relaxing on the deck or learning some sailing basics from the crew. You can schedule your sailing tour through TripAdvisor!

Sports and Outdoor Recreation

71) Take a Guided Horseback Tour in Sanford

Hidden Palms Ranch offers guided horseback trail rides through the picturesque Lake Jesup Conservation Area. We also provide a one-on-one Horse Experience for children who want to learn more about riding horses.

Address: Hidden Palms Ranch, 1410 Oakway, Sanford, FL 32773

72) Orlando Magic NBA Game

The NBA experience at the Amway Center is world-class basketball, edge-of-your-seat excitement, and lots of fun for all ages. It’s more than just watching a game – it’s experiencing everything Orlando Magic has to offer. There are entertaining in-game activities for fans of all ages that make the game an unforgettable experience.

73) Professional Soccer Game

Orlando City SC, an American professional soccer club based in Orlando, Florida, began play in 2015 as the 21st franchise in Major League Soccer. The games are located at Exploria Stadium in downtown Orlando. The stadium is beautiful, very clean, and conveniently located by lots of amazing restaurants!

Address: 655 W Church St, Orlando, FL 32805

74) Topgolf

At Topgolf, you can enjoy various games and activities to entertain all ages. The golf bays are climate-controlled playing areas perfect for all types of weather. You can enjoy private spaces for groups of any size and HDTVs that can be used to watch the game or listen to music while you play golf.

Address: 9295 Universal Blvd, Orlando, FL 32819

75) Ice Skating

At the Ice Factory of Central Florida, you can enjoy leisurely skating at a family-friendly rink. Some employees will help you get properly fitted for your ice skates. Go to their website to view the public skating schedule and up-to-date prices on skate rentals.

Address: 2221 Partin Settlement Rd, Kissimmee, FL 34744

76) Rock Climbing

Aiguille Rock Climbing Center is a fun place to go if you are a novice climber. The friendly atmosphere and sound level make it a great place to learn and develop your rock climbing skills. If you are already an experienced climber, there are many climbs to choose from at Aiguille.

Address: 830 S Ronald Reagan Blvd #252, Longwood, FL 32750

77) Helicopter Night Tour

You can enjoy a magical view of Orlando from a helicopter, with the pilot’s commentary providing fascinating insights into the city and its attractions. You may even catch the sunset or some fireworks at Disney World!

78) Painted Horizons Hot Air Balloon Tours

Painted Horizons offers breathtaking views of Central Florida from 2,000 feet. The company also offers exclusive flights for couples only. The champagne and snacks at the end are an excellent touch after an unforgettable experience.

Address: 12375 FL-535, Orlando, FL 32836

79) Hawaiian Rumble Adventure Golf

The mini-golf courses here look brand new! There is also a lovely waterfall, so you can enjoy running water sounds while playing. Employees are amicable and helpful. It might be one of the most excellent miniature golf courses you’ll ever go to!

Address: 13529 FL-535, Orlando, FL 32821

80) Orlando Tree Trek Adventure Park

Orlando Tree Trek Adventure Park offers an elevated outdoor obstacle course with zip lines, suspended bridges, nets, and Tarzan swings. There are four different levels for adults that become more challenging as you go. You cannot avoid the challenges and must finish each level before moving on to the next one. The last course is challenging because completing the three other levels is already very exhausting; however, assistance can be called anytime if needed.

Address: 7625 Sinclair Rd, Kissimmee, FL 34747

Local Farms and Farmers Markets

Downtown Farmers Market in Lake Eola Park

81) Farmers Markets

Downtown Farmers Market

The Downtown Farmers Market is located at Lake Eola Park and is open from 10 am to 3 pm on Sundays. The free parking can be hard to find, or you can pay for $5 parking across the street. This farmers market has many different vendors and so much good food and drink! All items were delicious! This park is also dog-friendly, making it great for spending time with friends or family.

Consider visiting the farmers’ markets in Winter Garden, Windermere, Clermont, and Celebration.

Address: 20 N Eola Dr, Orlando, FL 32801

Just imagine doing yoga with these adorable goats!

82) Wildflower Farm Orlando

Do you love baby goats and yoga? You can experience both at the Wildflower Farm in Orlando! Baby goat yoga is a fantastic experience you don’t want to miss out on!

Address: 2218 Carrington Dr, Orlando, FL 32807

Southern Hills Farm has a sunflower field too which makes for wonderful photo opportunities!

83) Southern Hills Farm

Clermont, Florida is home to a spectacular family farm where you can experience various activities. Southern Hill Farms is a farm that grows seasonal produce, including blueberry bushes and peach trees. They also have sunflowers and zinnias available during the Spring and Fall Festival. Lastly, during the winter months, you can pick strawberries there.

Address: 16651 Schofield Rd, Clermont, FL 34714

Spas and Relaxation

84) The Ritz-Carlton Spa

Create the perfect staycation at the Ritz-Carlton Hotel with their spa, which is an incredible 40,000 square feet. Get your nails done, schedule a massage appointment, and relax by the pool for ultimate relaxation.

Address: 4012 Central Florida Pkwy, Orlando, FL 32837

85) The Club at Bella Collina (Golf and Spa)

One of the best-kept secrets of local golf lovers! The community at the Bella Collina Club is private, and the views are amazing. A membership is required for golfing, but you can plan a fantastic spa day by yourself or a group of friends.

Address: 15920 County Rd 455, Montverde, FL 34756

86) Treehouse Rental

If you’re looking for a unique Orlando Airbnb rental option, consider staying in a treehouse near St. Cloud. This charming area is close to popular attractions like Lake Nona and Kississmee, so you’ll have plenty of things to do while you’re there.

woman holding a cup of tea at the Ette Hotel in Kissimmee, Florida

87) Afternoon Tea Room at the Ette Hotel

If you’re looking for a luxurious, modern hotel with all the bells and whistles – look no further than Ette Hotel! The boutique hotel opened in 2021 and is packed with features that will make your stay unforgettable. Not only is the tea selection exquisite, but their spa recently opened, so you can indulge in some pampering before catching up with friends. Evening Tea is held every Sunday from 12 pm to 5 pm, so there’s always an opportunity to enjoy a relaxing cup of tea with loved ones.

Address: 3001 Sherberth Rd, Kissimmee, FL 34747

Bottom Line

There is no doubt–the city of Orlando makes an epic vacation destination. It’s rather difficult to narrow down all of Orlando’s unique experiences! We’ve highlighted some of Orlando’s best theme parks but also listed some ideas to consider if you’re looking for something to do besides theme parks and attractions. Locals love these places because they’re more low-key and one-of-a-kind to Orlando.

Enjoy some of the best things to do in the area in Orlando. I hope this guide has helped you plan your next fun-filled day in the Sunshine State. We’ve also published articles on romantic getaways in Florida and weekend getaways if you want to explore more of Central Florida.

11 Beautiful Parks & Gardens in Orlando, Florida

Orlando is one of the most popular travel destinations in the country for thrillseekers and adrenaline junkies looking for a grand adventure. Although it is full of amusement parks and world-class attractions, it is also home to various majestic, and serene preened gardens and parks for those seeking peace and relaxation. 

The city is a source of inspiration for nature lovers, artists, and creatives of all kinds. Parks and gardens throughout the region allow Florida’s natural beauty to really shine! Lush green landscapes, blends of flora and fauna, and immaculate landscapes will allow those looking to escape the high crowds and become at peace and one with nature. 

The uniqueness and variety of the parks and gardens spread throughout Orlando are part of what makes them so interesting and attractive. Whether you are looking for a relaxing garden, trail-lined park, or views of wildlife and nature, Orlando parks and gardens allow an ideal reprieve away from theme parks, and a chance to experience a new perspective of the city. 

Parks and Gardens in Orlando We Love

To help guide you through the city’s numerous park and garden options, we have bundled together a list of the top destinations for you to swim, hike, and relax your way through Orlando the green way. As you can see, there are lots of things to do in Orlando when it comes to the outdoors!

1) Lake Eola Park 

Lake Eola Park is famous for being one of Orlando’s most popular ‘natural playgrounds.’ Located in the center of downtown, it’s a charming spot for a quick escape from all the hustle and bustle of the city. Whether you are looking to exercise, relax, or grab a bite to eat, Lake Eola State Park is the most convenient and pleasant place in the city. 

Those who enjoy staying fit and healthy will be happy to learn that the sidewalk circling the park is exactly a mile long, making it easy to keep track of progress. Other activities available at the park are renting swan shapes paddle boats and joining the real creatures on the water, indulging in local restaurants, watching a concert at the Walt Disney Amphitheater, or just relaxing among flower beds a quaint picnic in paradise. Be sure to bring your camera, as the park offers breathtaking views of the Orlando skyline. 

Hours and Entry Information: The park is open daily from 6 am until midnight. Entry is free for all guests and residents of the city. 

Address: 512 East Washington Street, Orlando, FL 32801

2) Harry P. Leu Gardens

Harry P. Leu Gardens is one of the city’s most sublime and luscious green pockets. It’s just minutes from downtown Orlando, sitting on 50 acres of botanical beauty overlooking Lake Rowena. The park was donated to the city by Harry P. Leu and his wife, Mary Jane, who lived in the majestic estate on the property.

The couple traveled extensively worldwide and brings back seeds and plants from their journeys. The park is now listed on the National Register of Historic Places, due to its blossoming array of flora and fauna they planted before passing away. The gardens are divided into 15 different sections, each with its own theme based on the plants growing in the area, such as a butterfly garden, citrus grove, tropical stem garden creating a rainforest effect, and floral clock.

Visitors can enjoy wandering through the gardens, learning about the history of the Leu house museum, marveling at various art installations, or simply relaxing and taking in all the gardens’ natural beauty. 

Hours and Entry Information: The park is open daily from 9 am until 5 pm and closed during the Christmas holiday. Entry to the gardens is $15 for adults and $10 for children and military personnel. 

Address: 1920 North Forest Avenue, Orlando, FL 32803

3) Wekiwa Springs State Park 

Wekiwa Springs State Park is the longest-running tourist attraction in Orange county, and has been a popular location for residents and visitors for decades. The natural water wonder just minutes from downtown is the ideal place to relax or cool off from the humid Florida temperatures.

Emerald spring waters fill the spring, and lush tropical hammocks are there to make the location superb for observing wildlife and relaxing with a nice crisp breeze. 

The park features miles of biking and hiking trails and horseback riding opportunities if you prefer a more natural approach. Canoes and kayaks are available for rent onsite, making it convenient for guests to enjoy the spring waters. The water temperatures stay 72 degrees Fahrenheit all year round, allowing swimmers to enjoy the springs every day of the year. 

Hours and Entry Information: The park is open daily from 8 am until 9 pm. Entry to the park is $2 per person or $6 per vehicle. 

Address: 1800 Wekiwa Circle, Apopka, FL 32712

The beautiful springs at Kelly Park! Photo courtesy of Yelp.

4) Kelly Park

Kelly Park is a gorgeous place to spend a day exploring. Located at Rock Springs, Apopka, Kelly Park is one of the closest springs to the city and an ideal way to immerse yourself in Florida’s nature. With the spring water being a consistent 68 degrees Fahrenheit, it’s favored among locals and guests as a place to coo off from the Florida humidity.

While at Kelly Park, guests can easily spend an entire day exploring and relaxing around the area, often called ‘a little slice of heaven.’ Guests can have a picnic and relax, hike through various nature trails, tube down the naturally made lazy river (the most popular attraction), and scour sharks’ teeth while snorkeling in the spring.

Hours and Entry Information: The park opens daily at 8 am, and is open until 8 pm in the summer and 6 pm in the winter. Entry is $1-$5 depending on the number of persons and vehicles.

Address: 400 East Kelly Park Road, Apopka, FL 32712

5) Blue Spring State Park

Blue Spring State Park sits along the St. Johns River and is home to some of Florida’s most gentle giants we call manatees. In addition to various marine creatures, the park also houses a wide variety of bird species. The spring keeps a temperature of 72 degrees Fahrenheit, which is perfect for swimming and other water activities. Nature lovers will enjoy the park’s 5 miles of hiking trails too!

Educational opportunities are available at Blue Spring State Park to learn about the springs’ history, conservation, and gentle giants. Visitors can partake in a wide variety of water activities, as kayaks and canoe rentals are available for guests.

Additionally, boat cruises are optional for a chance to explore the spring more in-depth and a chance to spot even more wildlife in the area. It’s a great day to spend the afternoon relaxing in the warm summer breeze. Concessions are available on-site, and a local gift shop for remembrances and souvenirs from your visit. 

Hours and Entry Information: The park is open daily from 8 am until sunset. Entry is $6 per vehicle. 

Address: 2100 West French Avenue, Orange City, FL 32763

6) Central Florida Zoo & Botanical Gardens 

Central Florida Zoo & Botanical Gardens is one of the most popular places to visit while in Orlando. Featuring over 100 species of plants and animals, it is an excellent place for families and visitors of all ages looking for a fun day in the city outside of a theme park. Explore and interact with your favorite animals, and immerse yourself in nature in the magical botanical gardens. 

The botanical garden sat Central Florida is the perfect opportunity to stop and smell the roses. Flora and Fauna, medical plants, wildflowers, and much more are flourishing throughout the area, bursting with colors, aromas, and breathtaking views.

The botanical gardens feature various different sections, including a butterfly garden, health, and wellness garden, spines, thorns, and prickles garden, fern collection, browse the collection, and fern collection. Educational opportunities are available all throughout the property, for chances to learn as much as you can about the magical wildlife blossoming in the gardens. 

Hours and Entry Information: The zoo and botanical garden are open daily from 9 am until 4 pm. Entry to the zoo and botanical garden is $22 per person and $14 for senior citizens. 

Address: 3755 West Seminole Boulevard, Sanford, FL 32771 

7) Mead Botanical Garden

Mead Botanical Garden is a beautiful oasis in the heart of Winter Park, just north of Orlando. Setting on 47 acres, your senses will come alive while you find tranquility, relax in nature, and experience the peacefulness of an urban setting outside the city’s hustle. Interact and immerse yourself in nature at one of the most beloved destinations in Orange County.

The botanical garden has plenty to do, so guests can never be bored. It is a paradise for nature lovers, featuring various hiking trails, a flowing creek, a boardwalk, a greenhouse, a butterfly garden, tall majestic pine trees, and a pond filled with turtles, fish, and waterfowl.

Multiple celebrations and events are hosted throughout the property, including the Growvember Fall Festival, Great Duck Derby, school program, summer camps, Fall Plant Sale, and Biodiversity backyard day. Guests can relax among the idyllic flora and fauna, participate in yoga or tai chi in the gardens, geocaching, guided hiking opportunities, and plenty of escape for a picnic.

The Mead Botanical garden is a proud promoter of eco-friendliness and sustainability and welcomes any and all volunteers willing to do their part to keep Orlando green and beautiful.

Hours and Entry Information: The botanical garden is open daily from 8am until 7pm. Entry is free for all guests and residents of the city.

Address: 1300 South Denning Drive, Winter Park, FL 32789

8) Kraft Azalea Garden

Kraft Azalea Garden is a popular scenic public park located just north of the city of Orlando. Known for being Winter Park’s secret garden, its secluded location makes it a local hidden gem and one of the most magical spots in the city. Sitting on the banks of Lake Maitland, 13 acres of luscious greeny is surrounded and shaded by towering cypress trees, showcasing the real charm of Florida.

The garden features the largest Banyan Tree in the northern part of Florida, the Great Egret Rookery, and the Exedra Monument. While the park is rather small, it offers a perfect escape into nature while still enjoying the wonders of the city of Orlando. There is plenty of space for reading, relaxing, or spreading out for an afternoon picnic. The park is also very popular among photographers, as many wedding, parties, and special events take part in the area, and the backdrop and beauty around the property is unmatched.

Hours and Entry Information: The park is open daily from 8am until dusk. Entry is free for all guests and residents of the city.

Address: 1365 Alabama Drive, Winter Park, FL 32789

Bill Frederick Park is a great place for camping, fishing, canoeing, and kayaking!

9) Bill Frederick Park

Bill Frederick Park is located alongside Turkey Lake, just minutes away from some of Orlando’s most popular attractions. It is one of the top 5 rated fishing lakes in Florida and is designed with nature lovers in mind. It covers over 183 acres of land, giving guests plenty of space to spread out and relax while immersing themselves in the Florida sunshine.

The park is perfect for family outings, organizations, and community groups’ various recreational areas for activities, meetings, and gorgeous scenic views. The park offers many activities and amenities such as bird watching, boat rentals, hiking, picnic areas, fitness stations, pavilions, sports areas, joking trails, a swimming pool, and playgrounds.

Hours and Entry Information: The park is open daily from 8 am until 7 pm during the summer months and from 8 am until 5 pm during the winter months. Entry to the park is free for all guests and residents of the city.

Address: 3401 South Hiawassee Road, Orlando, FL 32835

The peacock fountain is one of many unique sights at Central Park.

10) Central Park

Central Park is conveniently located in the heart of the shopping district in downtown Orlando. The park offers a slice of paradise in the middle of a concrete jungle and hosts various events and activities throughout the year. It is known as the crown jewel of parks, promoting sustainability and culture in Orlando, and attracts thousands of visitors annually to admire the beauty. 

The park features a majestic fountain, landscaped planters and scenery, a beautiful oak tree canopy, and a rose garden. The West Meadow in the park is available for private events such as weddings and reunions.

Spend the day wandering around the grounds, relaxing in the luscious green spaces, or simply enjoying the warm Florida atmosphere. Visitors visiting during certain times of the year can also participate in the Winter Park Sidewalk Art Festival and Old Fashioned Fourth of July Celebration. 

Hours and Entry Information: The park is open daily from 6 am until midnight and is free entry for all guests and residents of the city. 

Address: 150 West Morse Boulevard, Winter Park, FL 32789

11) Windermere Recreation Center 

The Windermere Recreation Center, also known as Butler Bay, is a favorite place among locals in the city. The park brings a blend of a laidback small-town coziness and a spectacular lakefront atmosphere. It’s an ideal place to enjoy a breathtaking sunset in the city with unobstructed views or observe gators and other waterfowl in their natural habitat. It is one of the greenest places in the city, providing a peaceful place to escape reality. 

The park features various activities and attractions for guests, such as a kayak launch, open-air pavilions, picnic tables, barbeque grills, walking paths, large grass relaxing area, and a charming small footbridge leading out into Lake Cresent.

Luxurious preferred travelers will be happy to learn that the area is also home to some of the most luxurious real estate in the state, with spectacular lakefront homes, country clubs, and pristine golf courses. 

Hours and Entry: The center is open daily from 7 am until 8 pm. Entry is free for all guests and residents in the city. 

Address: 11465 Park Avenue, Windermere, FL 34786

Bottom Line

While many visitors to Orlando are looking for a thrill, adventure, and world-class theme parks, the city offers so much more, especially for nature lovers. Dozens of relaxing green spaces spread out throughout the city, offering peace and relaxation. We hope you have enjoyed learning more about our favorite parks and gardens in Orlando! Hopefully, it inspires you to visit some of these luscious spaces during your next visit.

20 Fun Things to do in Orlando in October

As fall approaches, you may wonder what activities to add to your calendar. Whether you want a location to enjoy Oktoberfest or a family-friendly event, you’ll find it all in Orlando, Florida! This guide is jam-packed with the best things to do in Orlando in October. Continue reading so you can start planning for the month of October. 

Fall Festivals and Oktoberfest

There are several fantastic breweries in Orlando as well as Tampa Bay so check in with your favorites to see

1) Oktoberfest at Avalon Park

October 8, 2022

Want a fun way to celebrate October with the whole family? Oktoberfest at Avalon Park is set to occur from 5-10 pm on October 8 this year. There’s quite a lot to do at this event, including listening to live music, hanging out at the beer garden, and watching Alpine dancing. Kids can partake in the children’s games available or enjoy the tethered hot air balloon rides. There’s also food onsite, with various food trucks available.

2) Oktoberfest – Celebration Town Center

October 21-22

If you can’t get enough Oktoberfest celebrations, you can head to the Oktoberfest at Celebration Town Center. This celebration includes a long list of live performances from various musicians and bands. This festival occurs nearby the lake, offering a relaxed atmosphere for family fun. You can ride on a fall-themed hayride, enjoy live music, or browse the shops around the town center. This celebration begins at 5:30 pm on October 21 and 5 pm on October 22. 

3) Sanford Oktoberfest

October 14-16

Head to the Sanford Oktoberfest to celebrate German culture through tasty traditional meals, beer, live music, and dancing. Included in this celebration is Gemütlichkeit, meaning good cheer and friendliness! You’ll also see folk costumes worn during the celebration, making the event even more festive.

This festival extends from the Sanford Civic Center to the surrounding streets, providing plenty of space for the attendees to spread out. Nearby the festival is Hollerbach’s German restaurant, offering delicious food to fill up on between dancing and drinking. 

4) Epcot International Food & Wine Festival

July 14- November 20

The Epcot International Food & Wine Festival is one of the longest events on this list, running from July through November annually. You can celebrate this Lake Buena Vista event by tasting delicious cuisine from six continents. You’ll find everything from German eats to Canadian bites and Chinese cuisine at Disney, one of many of Orlando’s theme parks. 

Throughout the event, there are kid-friendly activities, including a scavenger hunt. You can enjoy live entertainment with well-known musical artists while you taste international cuisine. You can also purchase merch as a souvenir while at the festival. This Epcot festival occurs daily through November 20. Don’t forget to stop by Disney Springs for additional shopping opportunities after visiting the festival!

5) Fall Festival at Southern Hill Farms

September 24- November 13

Found in Clermont, Florida, the Fall Festival at Southern Hill Farms is not to be missed. This year marks the seventh annual fall festival, with delicious eats, including apple cider donuts and smores. There’s also a corn maze, pumpkin patch, and even a small climbing wall to keep kids occupied. A market barn and food truck barn ensure you head home with a bag full of goodies. This fall festival occurs Thursdays through Sundays weekly. 

6) Zombietoberfest

October 22

Get in the spirit by visiting Zombietoberfest in the Orlando area during the month of Halloween, held in the Audubon Park Garden District. This large festival typically occurs mid-month, with the 2022 date yet to be announced. This festival includes a large outdoor night market with three beer gardens, all serving craft beer options. You’ll also find live music and a DJ at this event. Bring your pet along, as there will be a pet-friendly costume contest. This event occurs from 5 pm – 10 pm each year. 

7) Calle Orange Festival

October 30

This one-day event runs from 1 pm to 9 pm in downtown Orlando. The Calle Orange Festival has been occurring for 30 years and brings in thousands of people annually. During the event, ten streets are closed off from vehicle usage and packed with vendors offering mouthwatering food options. Four stages also spread throughout the festival grounds with 40 musicians performing. The Calle Orange Festival celebrates the diversity in the local Hispanic community.     

8) Return to Joyland Beer Festival

October 14-15

This year marks the fourth year that Ivanhoe Park Brewing Company has been putting on the Return to Joyland Beer Festival event. This event celebrates the anniversary of Ivanhoe Park Brewing Company. As you attend this event, you’ll be transported back to 1915, when the area was originally known as Joyland. This festival lasts through the weekend and includes over 30 breweries from around the state. If you purchase tickets in advance, you’ll get additional perks such as unlimited pours and a celebratory glass to bring home.  

Art Festivals

9) Winter Park Autumn Art Festival

October 8-9

This Winter Park festival will appeal to all art lovers, including pieces from local artists. The Winter Park Autumn Art Festival is hosted this year by the Winter Park Chamber of Commerce. While attending, you can browse art set up along the sidewalk near historic Park Avenue in Central Park. As you explore the art, you’ll find live music and family-friendly activities occurring. This festival runs from 9 am to 5 pm each day and is free to attend. 

10) Mount Dora Craft Fair

October 22-23

Situated in historic downtown Mount Dora less than an hour from historic downtown Clermont, this craft fair is one of the best Orlando events for creative people. It’s even received multiple recognition from the Sunshine Artist Magazine as one of the best classic craft festivals. The Mount Dora Craft Fair includes 400 exhibitors from around the U.S., some of which are local vendors. You can browse and purchase the offerings from the exhibitors. Or, head to the festival to enjoy the music and the food. Beer and wine tastings are also available at the Mount Dora Craft Fair. There’s a kid-free zone at the fair for those who want a night out without the kids.  

Local Farms

11) Polk City Pumpkin Patch

October 1-31

Bring the kids to this family pumpkin patch and farm in Polk City! Here, you’ll find pumpkins ready to pick and an array of friendly farm animals. No reservations are required to visit Bell Family Farm and Apiary, so you can head straight to the farm to learn more about the adorable animals. You can even participate in goat yoga while at the farm. As a tip, if you purchase your tickets beforehand, you’ll receive a few dollars off per person. The farm is open Wednesday through Sunday every week. 

12) Whisper Creek Farm

October 8,9,15,16, 22, 23, 29,30

Celebrate Fall on the Farm in Grande Lakes, Orlando. This event offers fall fun on the Whisper Creek Farm with an array of activities for the entire family. You can take a hayride, go pumpkin picking, carve pumpkins, and even join two-time Olympic medalist Victor Dagatan in his painting workshops. Expect to spend at least half a day at this festival, as there are shops to browse, local food options, and even a Master Falconer teaching attendees about falcons. This event also has a corn maze, corn hole, games, and more. 

13) Orlando Corn Maze

October + November

Regardless of when you visit Orlando in the fall, you can head to Corn Maze Orlando, open every day in October and November. This corn maze’s current theme is Mission to the Moon, so expect a space-themed activity. There’s also a pumpkin patch and farm animals that you and your family can interact with. You can purchase tickets in advance through the Corn Maze Orlando website. Tickets are $10-$15 for kids, adults, and students.  

14) Southern Hills Farm

September 24- November 13

If you’re already attending the Southern Hills Farm Festival, check out the impressive corn maze onsite. It stretches over five acres, providing a fun experience for kids and adults. You’ll also find other activities such as wagon rides, yard games, and even a few spots for photo opps with your kids!

Family-Friendly Events

15) Mickey’s Not-So-Scary Halloween Party

August 12- October 31

If the Halloween Horror Nights at Universal Orlando Resort is too much for your family, check out Mickey’s Not-So-Scary Halloween Party at the Walt Disney World Resort. It’s a fun way to celebrate spooky season. Anyone attending this event can wear Halloween costumes (even adults!). This special event requires an additional ticket that allows you to stay after hours for the event. 

The event begins at 7 pm each day, starting with handing out a trick-or-treat bag to each event guest. There are 14 trick-or-treat spots throughout the park where you can get a piece of candy. There is also tasty Halloween-themed food that’s only available during this event for purchase. Other activities include not-so-scary fireworks, a parade, a show, and character meet-and-greets. This event’s ticket sells fast, so purchasing them way in advance is best.

16) SeaWorld Spooktacular

September 17 – October 31

Instead of heading to Disney, consider attending the SeaWorld Spooktacular; it’s one of the best events in central Florida during October. This family-friendly event features costumes, trick-or-treating, and exciting surprises, like storytime with Big Bird. There are also meet-and-greets with mermaids along the Trick-or-Treat Trail, a pumpkin garden, and a dance party. This event is complimentary with a purchase of a ticket to SeaWorld Orlando.

17) Brick or Treat Legoland Florida

September 24- October 30

During select weekends, LegoLand is hosting Brick or Treat. This event offers a fun space for families to celebrate Halloween with live entertainment, a costume parade, and trick-or-treating. During this event, you’ll be able to meet new Lego characters that haven’t been announced yet. There’s also a 4D movie, a dance party, and a coaster featuring fun music as you ride. 

Escape Rooms

Year-Round

18) The Escape Game Orlando

If you want fewer crowds, a better way to entertain the family during October is by attending an escape room. Multiple options are available throughout Florida, each providing uniquely themed rooms that you can select based on your and your family’s interests.

For example, The Escape Game Orlando offers rooms like Mission: Mars and Prison Break. Escape rooms help your family communicate better by encouraging you to work together to solve puzzles throughout the room. You can also check out The Great Escape Room or The Bureau as fun escape room options. 

Haunted Houses

19) A Petrified Forest

September 30-October 31

Looking for Halloween fun for teens and adults? Check out A Petrified Forest in Altamonte Springs, FL! This haunted attraction includes three spooky trails that you can explore this October. While exploring the grounds, you’ll see creepy dolls, swamp monsters, zombies, and more. You can also purchase a backstage pass to practice your scaring skills on fellow haunted house attendees. 

20) Mortem Manor Haunted Attraction

Year-Round

The exciting thing about this haunted attraction is that it’s open year-round, so you can enjoy a spooky excursion anytime! The Mortem Manor Haunted House includes two levels of scares. You’ll travel through the manor, getting spooked by animatronics, actors, and special effects. If the manor is a piece of cake for you, you can also try the Burial Simulator, which is not for the faint of heart!

Final Thoughts

As you can see, there are many things to do in Orlando in October, including Halloween events. You’ll find everything from heart-pumping haunted houses to fun, kid-friendly activities that you can enjoy. Which activities and fun events are you most excited about? Let us know in the comments below!

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